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Butter boards are the fun new appetizer trend. They are easier than charcuterie boards and are show-stoppers for any occasion. 

This is one of my most requested seasonal items around November. The bright, tart flavor of the cranberry is accompanied by bright, subtle citrus notes of the cilantro with savory undertones from the cumin and green onions, and to finish the balancing act, just a light hint of heat to balance the sweetness from the jalapeño.  A symphony of flavors to use as a garnish to your Thanksgiving plate, or to use as a topper on cream cheese for a delicious butter board appetizer. 

Cranberry Jalapeño Sauce

  • 1 bag of cranberries (12 oz)

  • 4-5 green onions, chopped

  • 1/4 cup cilantro, rough chopped

  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped

  • 1 cup sugar (more or less base of taste)

  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin

  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice (1 large lemon)

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt


  1. Pulse the cranberries in the food processor or blender until coarsely chopped. Add green onions, jalapeno, cilantro, sugar, lemon juice, salt, and cumin to the cranberry mix. Pulse until well combined and finely chopped.

  2. Transfer the mixture to a covered bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour. This will build flavor and allow the sugar to dissolve.

Note: This sauce can be used in numerous ways to garnish your holiday table with pops of flavor. 

  1. Use it as the cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving

  2. Spread on your turkey sandwiches

  3. Add to the top of baked brie 

  4. Serve it as a salsa with some tortilla chips, or even cinnamon sugar tortilla chips

  5. Blend with 8 oz of cream cheese and 1 oz of Boursin. Pour over the top and serve with crackers for a creamy dip. 

Create a butter board by smearing the center of a cutting board or platter with softened butter, cream cheese, Boursin cheese, or even pumpkin puree. Layer the toppings. The flavor combinations are endless. 

  • Start with quality unsalted butter. Softened butter or whip the butter to allow for more pliability and grab a large board. 
  • Sprinkle with a liberal layer of flakey salt, like Maldon. Find a citrus pairing to help bring additional depth or brightness, like lemon, lime, or orange. 
  • Layer the flavors. This can be savory like roasted garlic or herbs, sweet like honey or maple syrup, fresh fruit or jams, or spicy like chili oil or chipotle powder. Add texture with dried fruits, nuts, bacon bites, and fried onions.  
  • Serve with warm crusty bread. 

Antipasta-Inspired Butter Board  — roasted garlic, roasted red peppers, diced olives, sprinkled parmesan cheese, pesto drizzled, crushed red pepper, and Italian herbs over the top. Serve with warm ciabatta bread.

Sweet and Spicy Board — Hot honey, fresh blackberries, bourbon bacon jam, fresh cracked pepper, and toasted pecans

French-Inspired Butter Board — diced radishes, lemon zest, herbs like basil, dill, chives, and Maldon salt. Serve with a baguette. 

Breakfast Board — sprinkle cinnamon and sugar, diced strawberries, and peach jam, and serve with brioche toast. 

Learn more from Chef Lydia at

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